Back before I got my first assignment for MAD I did a few jobs for longtime MAD knockoff Cracked Magazine, as I recounted a bit in this blog post. Over a year ago the rights to Cracked were bought by a group of investors, and there ensued a total makeover by a newly assembled team of contributors (several from the Harvard Lampoon) that lead to the debut of the new Cracked in August of 2006.
Looks like Cracked Magazine‘s big comeback lasted a whole three issues.
Read an open letter from Jay Pinkerton concerning Cracked’s ceasing publication (via theapiary.org)
I didn’t care much one way or the other with the new Cracked, as it was obvious they were not going to have much in the way of cartooning or artwork anymore. The only artist I knew who still contributed was Jason Seiler, an excellent illustrator and caricaturist who did two pieces that were hard to find in the issues they appeared in. At least they had the guts to stop being a MAD rip-off and try something different… well, different from MAD at least. The one issue I actually read looked like Maxim with less boobs and more attempts at angry humor. I didn’t like or dislike the issue, but it didn’t make me laugh. Not my cup of tea, but more power to them, I thought. They also distanced themselves from the kind of “we’re as good as MAD, and MAD hates us for it” garbage that used to piss me off even when I was working for Cracked.
I guess things didn’t work out too well. It’s never a good thing when something fails in your genre like that, even though Cracked was targeting a different reader. It looks like their website will still be going, and they may do some books, but the magazine itself is no longer in publication
Maybe that’s the end, finally. You never know… this magazine has come back to life more times than your average ax wielding horror film killer. Maybe we haven’t seen the last of Sylvester P. Smythe.
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